what to pack: travel with preschoolers

We live 20 hours from both sides of our family and fly at least twice a year to visit them. Ideally we would travel with Dad too, but often I fly solo with our two preschoolers.

Out of necessity I have developed a bit of process for what to pack for plane flights! Our kids are energetic and bringing a variety of things to do is important to my Mom survival! 

1. Travel pillow

We pack 1 per child's backpack and they fit perfectly behind our little one's seat on the plane. Also helpful if they fall asleep. 

2. Leakproof water bottle

Quick tip: empty the bottle before security and refill at a water fountain. 

3. Leapfrog Tag Reader

We've used our tag reader for years. I love the compact size and we select a few favorite books to bring on the plane to "read." 

4. Snacks

They are a life saver. We pack pretzels, crackers, fruit snacks, and applesauce. I love squeezable applesauces and can be found at most grocery stores. 

5. Activity books

Sticker books, activity books, and coloring books are good to have on hand along with a small box of crayons. 

6. Golden books

Bring a few favorite small books to read on the plane. I find Golden books to be the perfect size for backpacks.

7. A new tv episode...or two

I download a new video (usually Daniel Tiger or Curious George) to my iphone the night before the trip. It is fresh and new for the kids to watch and each episode averages 20-30 minutes. 


Do you have any other suggestions? Travel tips? I would love to hear them!